Sunday, March 25, 2007

My views on Shakespeare's authorship part 1

Since I have not actually read anything for or against Shakespeare being the true author, except for the Novel Chasing Shakespeares (which voted for Edward de Vere, earl of Oxford, as being the true author) I havent made up my mind who the author is. I can tell you who I don't think it is, and that is Francis Bacon.

If ciphers were the ONLY way one can determine an author, then all the authors determined by this method, IMO, would be faked. Some years ago, a book called "The Bible Code" was published. I briefly looked through it, but when I saw that several pages were nothing but number grids with certain numbers circled, I put the book down and have never read it to date. I have been of the mind that ciphers are not very accurate because one can make a cipher or a number grid read anything they want it to say. You can choose every second letter, every 3rd letter, every 5th or 15th letter, even every 22nd letter (or any other sequence you like) and you can make the cipher say whatever you want. I do not consider that to be scientific or accurate. The Case for Francis Bacon (Sidebar link) being the playwright depends on ciphers as proof.

Today as I was searching for more websites about the Shakespeare authorship debate, I came across a very nice Q&A (Conversations about Who Wrote Shakespeare in Sidebar) which has some ideas on why de Vere/Oxford is not the author. Unfortunately, IMO there is insufficient proof to rule Oxford out despite this specific conversation saying that it was adequate. This Q&A tends to accept that just because Oxford was not listed as being there, therefore he was NOT there.

As I have been told over and over again, you cannot prove a negative, and just because a persons name is not mentioned on a list - does NOT mean they were NOT there. A name on a list only proves that they were there - which is called positive proof.

I'm sure I will have more to say on the subject of Shakespeares authorship at a later time.

Here is a list of movies based on Shakespeares plays.

The Taming of the Shrew, 1929, starring Mary Pickford and Douglas Fairbanks
A Midsummer Night's Dream, 1935, dir. by Max Reinhardt & William Dieterle
Romeo and Juliet, 1935, dir. by George Cukor
As You Like It, 1936, dir. by Paul Czinner
Henry V, 1945, dir. by Lawrence Olivier
Hamlet, 1948, dir. by Lawrence Olivier
Macbeth, 1948, dir. by Orson Welles
Othello, 1952, dir. by Orson Welles
Julius Caesar, 1953, dir. by Joseph L. Mankiewicz
Romeo and Juliet, 1954, dir. by Renato Castellani
Richard III, 1955, dir. by Lawrence Olivier
Othello, 1956, dir. by Sergei Jutkevitsh
Forbidden Planet, 1956, dir. by Fred M. Wilcox (based on The Tempest)
Hamlet, 1964, dir. by Grigori Kozintsev (translation by Boris Pasternak)
Falstaff, 1965, dir. by Orson Welles
The Taming of the Shrew, 1967, dir. by Franco Zeffirelli (Elisabeth Taylor and Richard Burton)
Romeo and Juliet, 1968, dir. by Franco Zeffirelli (Olivia Hussey)
King Lear, 1970, dir. by Peter Brook
Macbeth, 1972, dir. by Roman Polanski
The Tempest, 1982, dir. by Paul Mazursky
Ran , 1985, dir. by Akira Kurosawa (based on King Lear)
King Lear, 1987, dir. by Jean-Luc Godard
Henry V, 1989, dir. by Kenneth Branagh
Hamlet, 1991, dir. by Franco Zeffirelli
Prospero's Books, 1991, dir. by Peter Greenaway
Much Ado about Nothing, 1993, dir. by Kenneth Branagh (Keanu Reeves, Denzel Washington, Michael Keaton, Robert Sean Leonard, Emma Thompson, Kate Beckinsale)
Othello, 1995, dir. by Oliver Parker
Hamlet, 1996, dir. by Kenneth Branagh
William Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet, 1996, dir. by Baz Luhrman (Leonardo DiCaprio & Claire Danes)
Twelfth Night, 1996, dir. by Trevor Nunn
Looking for Richard, dir. by Al Pacino, 1996
Shakespeare in Love, 1998, dir. by John Madden (Joseph Fiennes & Gwyneth Paltrow)
10 Things I Hate About You, 1999, dir. by Gil Junger (based on The Taming of the Shrew)

William Shakespeare's Midsummer Night's Dream, 1999, dir. by Michael Hoffman
Love's Labour Lost, 2000, dir. by Kenneth Branagh
O aka The One, 2001, dir. by Tim Blake Nelson (based on Othello)
The Merchant of Venice, 2004, dir. by Michael Radford (Al Pacino, Jeremy Irons, Lynn Collins, Joseph Fiennes)

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